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The General Manager of the NATO EUROFIGHTER and TORNADO Management Agency (NETMA), Miguel Ángel Martín Pérez, and the CEO of Eurofighter GmbH, Hermann Claesen, yesterday signed a contract to supply 38 new EUROFIGHTER aircraft to the German Armed Forces. The order, also known as Quadriga, covers a total of 30 single-seater and 8 two-seater EUROFIGHTERs. Three of the aircraft will be equipped with additional test installations as Instrumented Test Aircraft for the further development of the EUROFIGHTER programme. NETMA is the multinational procurement agency acting on behalf of the four participating nations: Germany, Italy, Spain and United Kingdom. Since 1996, it has been responsible for the development and procurement of the EUROFIGHTER weapon system and the NATO’s TORNADO Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MRCA).

The 38 new Quadriga aircraft will replace the Tranche 1 versions currently in service, with the new aircraft to be equipped with the world’s most advanced electronic radar (E-Scan), future-proof hardware and software in addition to an even more comprehensive multi-role combat capability against air and ground targets. With a service life well beyond 2060, its technical capabilities will allow full integration into the future European air combat environment. Germany’s renewed order secures production until 2030 and comes at a strategically important time for the programme. In addition to an expected EUROFIGHTER order from Spain to replace obsolete F-18 aircraft, selection decisions in Switzerland and Finland are imminent in 2021. The variant offered in Switzerland corresponds to the configuration of the German Quadriga order. According to Airbus, the Eurofighter is the largest European defence programme. In addition to technological capabilities, it secures more than 100,000 jobs in Europe.

Gerhard Heiming